Materials: BEKVAM Stool, PEXTO blacksmiths stake plate, electric drill, w 1/4″ countersink bit, Electric Sabersaw w wood blade, 1/4″x2″ carriage bolts & washers (x3)

Description: Creating a solid, yet portable base for anvils and stakeplates is a difficult challenge. Making those look *good* is even harder to solve, so while this IKEA-Hack is actually commonplace among blacksmiths, ferriers, metal-artisans and the renaissance re-enactor crowd, it’s going to seem a little ‘niche’ for the rest of us.

1. Procure and assemble a BEKVAM Step Stool from IKEA (Article Number: 601.788.87).

2. Take your handy household stake-plate (PEXTO is a good brand) and lay it on the top of the bench. Measure and mark the holes.

3. Since the pre-cut hand hole in the top of the BEKVAM is a great starting place, use that as a starting point for cutting out the two major hardy holes using a saber saw. I tried hard to ‘color within the lines’ when cutting so the stake-plate would fit snugly into the enlarged holes with no rattling around. This will matter a lot later when you are pounding out armor or horsehoes.

4. Drill the three bolt holes using a 1″4 countersink bit.

5. Drop in the stake-plate – sand, file or dremel the holes until it fits, then drop in the 1/4″ bolts with the washers and nuts on the bottom. Tighten until veins pop out on your arms or the wook creaks.

6. Go make something!

~ Michael Steele, Austin, Texas